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Tuesday, August 3, 2004

sunncomm updates drm

sunncomm’s been a post-child for drm discussions here at the meta-roj blog since they were defeated by a shift key. now, we learn that the latest creation from sunncomm claims to avoid the shift-key problem, and even better, sunncomm’s reaching out to apple (the company that can’t get into the music business according to a 1991 agreement with apple corps, ltd.).

SunnComm announces CD protection software update [the business journal, phoenix, july 30, 2004]

According to an announcement from SunnComm, protection components embedded on the optical medium will now make it impossible for the user to play the disc without installing the MediaMax software.

i just have to observe that “protection components embedded in the optical medium” pretty much guarantee that it’s not a cd anymore – at least not according to the rainbow of books that define what a cd is.

i think the lesson here is that the itunes userbase has become problematic enough to force a shift in the drm technology. “Most of those questions are related to getting the songs onto an iPod.” – that was enough to cause change at sunncomm. the new wrapper is just going to annoy a different chunk of the audience, and they may not be as “active” as ipod users, so annoying them may not be as costly – except to the artist.

In the end what is required is a piece of software that will support handoff from the CD to any of Microsoft, Apple’s or Sony’s DRM but not to a system with no DRM.

i would disagree. what’s needed is a new business model… one that respects the relationship between artist and audience, rather than trying to impose on it.

posted by roj at 3:54 am